Yesterday, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled against defendant Peter Ronchi, who had appealed his two first-degree murder convictions for the violent stabbing death of his girlfriend and her unborn child. The Court rejected the defendant’s claim that his conviction for the murder of the unborn child was an error because he had not stabbed the baby. The SJC observed, “By ending the mother’s life, he destroyed the viable fetus through cessation of maternal blood flow.”
MCFL’s executive director, Patricia Stewart, Esq., praised the court’s decision, “We applaud the Supreme Judicial Court’s life-affirming acknowledgement of the humanity of the unborn child in its recognition of the fetus as the second victim of a maternal murder, even without a direct traumatic injury to the unborn child. In so ruling, the court rejected outmoded ways of thinking about the status of an unborn child in instances of violent crime.”
Myrna Maloney Flynn, MCFL’s president, offered mixed reaction. “It’s excellent that the Court unambiguously states that not one but two innocent lives were lost in this horrific crime: those of a pregnant woman and a preborn human being. What’s nearly as newsworthy is that, in its February 14 article about the Court’s ruling, The Boston Globe included the phrase ‘unborn child’ three times as well as ‘unborn son.’ What concerns me is the glaringly egregious and ongoing double standard that our legal system and media continue to ignore.”
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“In its decision, the Court said that the accused ‘committed an act of violence against a woman who was nine months pregnant’ and ‘destroyed a viable fetus.’ Where is the Court’s defense of fetuses who die every day in this state from direct acts of violence that characterize abortions? How can the Globe use the phrase ‘unborn child’ in a story like this but avoid it in any article about so-called ‘abortion care’ or ‘reproductive health’? Moreover, the Court’s ruling only highlights the biggest inconsistency of all: that it is legal to end the life of any fetus up until the moment of birth in this state by means of an abortion,” Flynn concluded.
LifeNews Note: Patricia Stewart is the executive director of Massachusetts Citizens for Life.